Sunday, June 16

Happy Father's Day x 3

I just finished posting an entry, and maybe will have a little time to dedicate to Father's Day.  In a previous post, I wrote about the dilemma of not knowing how to celebrate my Dad in what could be his last Father's Day, due to his diagnosis of metastatic melanoma, and celebrating Brent as a great Dad to our son, Justin. In my haste, I neglected to mention my Father in Law.

I decided to honor each of them by reflecting on who they are as Dads. Since I have known my Dad for the better part of forty years, I will start with him.  He is someone I love and respect a great deal. I celebrate him today for the things he has taught me, and the example he has been.

I remember when I was in High School, there was a time when I wanted advice on how to make friends, and on being a better friend. He simply told me to talk less, and listen more. He told me to ask people how they were doing and what things interested them instead of wanting to talk about myself.  It seemed simple enough, however when I applied this advice to my friendships, I connected with people on a much deeper level, and learned from others. My Dad also modeled this for me.  We used to connect over long walks and father-daughter breakfasts.  He has spent many years listening to and praying for me. I am so thankful for his influence in my life.

I have known many Christians in my lifetime, but I would say that nobody has had an impact on my faith more than my Dad. He has faced crisis many times in his life, and each time, I have seen God's grace rather than anger or self-pity. Whenever we talk about his cancer and the prognosis he has been given, he talks about how he tries to feel sorry for himself, but somehow it feels unnatural.  He continues to model thankfulness in the midst of difficulty.

Next, I celebrate Brent--my husband, and father to my beautiful son, Justin. We have been married for fifteen years, and have been parents for almost two.  It is hard to know where to begin in describing Brent as a Father.  He is a natural, and was born for this role. Brent is an independent contractor, and has had three jobs for a good part of Justin's life.  Despite being busy, he always finds time to spend with Justin.  He has had to pick up a lot of slack during certain times when I have been too depressed to function.  He does so without complaining or blaming.  I   love watching Justin's reaction everyday when Brent walks through the door after work. He adores his boy, and I can see Justin feels very secure in that.

Brent is steady and solid, generous and compassionate. When there is a need, he looks for ways to meet it. I pray that Justin will inherit those traits.

Last, but not least I celebrate my Father In Law for his role as Dad and Papa to Justin. Dad has a special place in Justin's heart, because there is a resemblance between the two of them. While the rest of us have dark hair and dark eyes, Dad has Justin's coloring.  I can tell that when Justin looks at him, he sees himself, and that must be fun for him. There are many things I respect about my other Dad. He is a hard worker, and has a solid work ethic.  He just retired from forty five years of teaching.  That is incredible to me.  He has an artistic side like my own Dad, and loves beauty.  He decided to learn about photography a few years ago, and is incredibly gifted. He doesn't do anything half-way.  He is a teacher both inside and out of the classroom, always looking for a teachable moment. The most significant role he has played in my life besides what I have observed and learned from him has been how he raised Brent to be the man he is today.  For that I am extremely grateful.

This was going to be a short post, but I just wanted to thank the three Dads that I celebrate today.

Love You Always,

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Italy trip

I have been going through my pictures, and have enjoyed looking at this album of Italy. I was able to go over last year to attend a conference. This was the first time I have been back in twenty years. The pictures are made up mostly of places we lived as a family. My brother and I were able to go together, and we were graciously hosted by some friends of ours from language school in Perugia. I feel such a sense of nostalgia when I look at these pictures. I miss Italy so much. It was strange to go back as a tourist knowing I would be returning to the US after such a short time. Tonight I made cookies with Nutella in them, and I remembered how much I enjoyed the simple pleasures. Fortunately, you can find it here! Saturday, we are going up to my brother's house to celebrate a late Thanksgiving, only we will be making homemade tortellini instead of turkey. Happy Thanksgiving!